Today is the end of Shloshim. My world supposedly is returning to normal tomorrow. All the restrictions for the past 30 days will be lifted and life will partly go back to how it always has been and yet will never ever be the same. Tonight we are having a celebration for you. I went last night to put out 22 tables, and as I was putting chairs around table 19 I started to cry. It had nothing to do with the tables or the room and everything to do with the reason behind the setup. 22 tables should be in a room to celebrate your Bat-Mitzvah or your wedding. 22 tables should be in a room to celebrate the birth of your first daughter at kiddush or your first son's bris. 22 tables should be in a room to celebrate anything but the fact that you lived for 4 years 11 months and 22 days.
The 22 tables, as well as the room, will be decorated in your favorite color red, black because we always used it to help you with your vision, and grey/silver because it sparkles and compliments the red and black well. Auntie A and I made a glitter banner for your candy area that we totally could have bought off of Etsy, but it was so much fun to use her Cricut machine, and it only took 3 hours of our day. I should mention it was fun to do, turned out great, is so sparkly, and amazing and it looks store-bought. We have tons of red, black, and silver candy sitting in the house. Noam keeps walking around saying "Dondee Tandy". He was so excited over the dum-dums that arrived last night after I panicked over not being sure we had enough candy for the number of people attending, and he kept shouting "law-wee, law-wee...Dondee tandy".
I threatened your siblings with not staying the entire time tonight because they cannot seem to get their act straight lately and get to sleep on time. I am sure you would be rolling your eyes at their shenanigans these days. Laeya wrote a song and will be singing it for you tonight, she even invited Meena to sing two lines with her, it makes my heart burst that she did that, but I know she wishes you could be singing with her. It is a really sweet song, I hope you can hear her sing it; don't worry, she has been working with Mrs. Kasiah for voice lessons and really doesn't sound too bad. We also have a couple of slide shows, and honestly, it was really challenging limiting what pictures we used even though it was less than 5 years that you were here with us. You really did have a jammed packed life and I am so grateful I have so many pictures and videos to help keep the memories alive.
We are doing a mitzvah project that involves asking everyone to take on a new mitzvah in your honor. We will have books at your celebration that represent different "chapters" that each person can write their name in and we will then put them together to be part of one book of mitzvahs. We are also working on something at Chabad to give the boys tzitzit and a kippah when they turn three and girls their first candle to light for Shabbas, but we have not finetuned the details just yet. We have one more special surprise we are working on, but it isn't finalized yet and I want to tell you it when it is solidified, I think it will make you extremely happy though.
I don't know if you know I have gone to visit you every day except Shabbas since shiva ended. You have quite the collection of rocks and your room looks really nice and kept. After the rain last week they had to fill in the front by the sidewalk, but they did it within 24 hours. I have now spent many collective hours chatting with Ms. Wendy, Mr. Ray, and Mr. Darren. The grounds staff is there all the time as well, and I often wonder how they have so much to do, but at the same time, you have gained quite a few neighbors over the last few weeks, so that has kept them pretty busy. Tzviki, Meena, Laeya, and I took a walk on Sunday through the entire cemetery reading the headstones and giving our opinions on the prettiest colors and neatest looking ones. We are all excited for yours to be up, but we still haven't figured out what we are writing on all of your pieces. I am sure it will eventually come to me, and since we have time, I am not worried.
I switched out your closet cabinet with the Ikea unit in the playroom so Noam stops spilling out all the board games. It is working like a charm so far, but it has only been 2 days. You have so many items that can now be on display that the Ikea unit is a much better fit anyway. I still have so many items to hang and so much to do for your room to be complete, I am sorry it is taking so long. I have been keeping myself busy preparing for tonight that I am a bit scared about what is going to happen tomorrow. I am thinking about going back to work, but I am so nervous at the same time. I am just still having a tough time figuring out this whole living life part without you here. It still doesn't make sense, it is still weird, it is still wrong.
While I could continue to write you a novel with everything I want to tell you I am sure you have other things to occupy your time. So, if I could make a request, I would love for you to come over to Chabad tonight between 5-8 because you have literally hundreds of people who are coming to celebrate your life and I want you to see just how truly loved you are and always will be.
With love always,